Our family tries to shop as frugally as we can, but purchasing the cottage & traveling to-and fro between homes has made this an even bigger necessity. Convenience foods can seem "cheap and easy" at the time, but what a deception! Lacking in nutrition and sustenance, too often we're left hungry and out of $10+ (which could've been spent on "staple" ingredients for homemade (tastier) snacks.
Here's what I try to do:
*Freeze breadstick and pizza dough
*Make pancakes the night before, then freeze it for the week (heh, more like 2-3 days--we love pancakes)
*Keep baby carrots in a tupperware container to easily bring along in the car
*Bake cookies--they keep well (if they're not instantly eaten:) and its worth it to triple the recipe!
*No more boxed cereal (if we can help it) Honestly, paying $3 a box really adds up, especially in families with children! Having cereal for breakfast, plus as a quick snack=the FREQUENT question," Where is the cereal? Where'd it go?!?" LOL
Lately, I've been assigned to the job of monitoring the grocery budget, and making sure we get "the basics". Well its been great, but we're looking forward to eating from our garden this summer--grocer prices are slowly rising! But luckily at Publix I found (hidden) savings! Canned goods are for our "emergency pantry".
4 cans of northern beans $0.40 each
1 can of organic beans & rice $0.50
McCormick seasoning $0.99
Large package of pork chops $9.99
Total savings $15
~ (above photo: washing my dresses by hand)
The thing is, I've been trying to minimise buying clothes and accessories. My personal goal of non-accumulation is to give away most of the things that I'm not using--which is hard!!
My favorite online resource on clothing is How to dress like a pioneer woman. Its amazing to think that the average 19th century woman had only 2 dresses as her entire wardrobe, wearing aprons to keep the dresses clean, and one pair of long-lasting boots :) Although this isn't practical for many of us, I think its resourceful, challenging, and inspiring.
"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes?" Matthew 6:25